President Zelensky’s goal of producing a million UAVs in 2024 is achievable with help from the public, a minister has said
Citizens should complete online courses and begin assembling drones for the needs of Ukraine’s military amid its conflict with Russia, the country’s Deputy PM and Digital Transformation Minister Mikhail Fedorov has said.
The goal of producing a million UAVs in 2024 recently announced by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky is “realistic” if the public helps the government, Fedorov insisted in a post on Facebook on Saturday.
Small, first-person-view (FPV) drones have become “a game-changer” in the countries’ confrontation, he wrote.
Since the fighting started in February 2022, the Kiev government has removed many legal obstacles faced by drone-makers and the country’s firms are currently increasing production, the minister added.
But any person away from the front lines can also assist Ukraine to boost its arsenal of UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) by completing “an engineering course that teaches you how to assemble a seven-inch FPV drone at home,” Fedorov explained.
According to the minister, the online program provides lectures, Zoom conferences with experts, a list of components and must-have tools and materials needed to make a UAV, as well as access to an engineering community for advice and questions. A new course starts every two weeks and is absolutely free, he wrote.
Participants in the program have already assembled around a hundred drones and 80% of these were in working order, which is a good result, Fedorov stressed.
The chief of Electronic and Cyber Warfare at Ukraine’s General Staff, Colonel Ivan Pavlenko, told the Financial Times last week that “the Russians have been producing so many [drones] lately that it’s becoming a huge threat” for Kiev’s forces.
In the same article, the FT reported that Moscow also “maintains the upper hand” when it comes to electronic warfare technology aimed at jamming and diverting enemy UAVs, while Kiev is only “trying to catch up.”
Former Ukrainian MP Igor Lutsenko, who now serves in the military, told Ukrainian outlet Telegraf last week that Russia is launching around a hundred drones per day on the frontline. However, with production in Russia on the rise, Lutsenko said he expected the daily launches to increase to 200 or 300 soon.
As for Ukraine, the goal of making one million UAVs this year is “achievable” but won’t be enough, he warned, as the country actually needs two or three times more than that.
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